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About Me









I was born and grew up in the countryside in County Cavan, Ireland. My family was the Irish Partridge family. Mandolins and accordions were common Christmas presents. My seven siblings (one brother and six sisters) didn’t escape the dreaded, “here, learn how to play this” when a musician in our Dad’s band either quit or died. As a result I learned to play Button Accordion, Mandolin, Bouzouki, Pennywhistle and Bodhran by the time I was 10 years old. When I was 15, I begged my Dad to buy me a Bass Guitar. He did, and it set me free!

I moved to Dublin. For the next seven years I performed with various bands all over Ireland and Europe. When I was 23, I moved to Los Angeles where I spent the first six years touring with a world beat band led by Pamela Whitman, great granddaughter of poet, Walt Whitman.

In 1996, I took a break from touring to spend more time with my children. During this time I worked as a session musician. My knowledge of Accordion, Bouzouki and all those other “not so cool at the time” instruments from my childhood were now serving me well. I began to discover through performing on these instruments, that I was finding my roots again and loving it. I began writing music that became the basis for the Celtic Fusion band, Finn MacCool, which I formed that same year. I have been touring with Finn MacCool for several years receiving positive feedback from both the public and the press. (Please see reviews at the top of this page) I am currently writing a musical titled Ancestral Voices and recording three CD’s of music. The first CD is music from the musical. The second is music and songs inspired by the Gypsy culture both in Ireland and Europe. The third CD is a selection of old Irish songs I love to perform.

My musical influences are too vast to go into here. I love all music and listen to everything from rock to classical. If I had to pick the musical decade I best relate to, I would have to say the 70’s. Why? Because when I listen to music from that era, I hear real freedom of expression. There is a realness to the music. It has to be real. It has to be sincere. I hope that comes across in my music.

So in closing. Nothing stays the same and that is one of the reasons I love music so much. When I pick up my Bouzouki or my Bass or whatever instrument calls me, I never know where it will lead me. I feel as though music is creating me, instead of the other way around. I hope to travel with it ’til this journey ends. And I hope we meet along the way. And if we have crossed paths, let me now say, I love that I met you, for you are a part of my journey. Sláinte


Peter McGowan


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